- DHS announced plans to make airport security more accommodating to transgender people.
- Weeks after the DHS announcement, GOP lawmakers filed a bill attempting to halt the department’s efforts.
- Transgender travelers have long cited difficulties going through airport security.
Republican legislators introduced a bill in recent weeks attempting to stymie the Department of Homeland Security’s attempt to make air travel easier for transgender travelers.
The bill, which was introduced by Colorado Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert, is titled the “Securing Americans from Transportation Insanity Act.” The bill was first introduced on April 21, about three weeks after the Department of Homeland Security announced its plans on “Transgender Day of Visibility” to revamp airport security screenings.
According to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, the department’s proposed changes are “part of a whole-of-government effort to promote equity and inclusion in all our programs and processes.”
DHS ‘new plans include deploying a gender-neutral scanning system, working with airlines to better serve people with an “X” gender marker, and less invasive screenings for people who trigger the security scanners in a “sensitive area” until the new scanning system is implemented. The agency said the new process will not compromise security.
Transgender people and activists have frequently cited difficulties going through airport security. According to a 2015 report from the National Center for Transgender Equality, more than 40% of respondents reported experiencing issues or discrimination at airport security checkpoints.
But the measures were a step too far for Boebert and some of her Republican colleagues. She accused the Biden Administration of “inviting terrorists” to take advantage of US airport security.
“If you doubt the Biden regime is on a woke crusade to remake America in its own image, then look no further than the TSA’s new trans screening policies,” Boebert said in a statement to Insider. “Decreasing pat-downs and identity validation measures for people identifying as transgender might validate delusional leftists, but it does nothing for passenger safety. In fact, they are practically inviting terrorists to take advantage of our weak and woke security systems. The TSA literally has one job — and this isn’t it. “
Boebert’s bill, which includes 11 Republican co-sponsors, prohibits any federal funds from being used by the Transportation Security Administration to “remove biologically determined sex-based screening procedures from security screening.”
The bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Bishop, Good, Norman, Gaetz, Mast, Gohmert, Donalds, Jackson, Miller, Duncan, and Cline and was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security on April 21.